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getting baby on a routine

I have a 3 month old and i have pretty much let him do his own thing so far eat when he wants and sleep when he wants. I dont even put him down for bed the same time every night i just let him go to sleep when he wants.
when did you start getting your baby on a routine? where should i start? I know at some point we need to put him down the same time every night so he understands its bed time.

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Asked by Anonymous at 12:29 AM on Aug. 1, 2009 in Babies (0-12 months)

Answers (9)
  • Probably at 6 or 7 months - maybe a bit earlier.

    Answer by allans_girl at 12:30 AM on Aug. 1, 2009

  • I started my daughter on a regular bedtime at 3 months.
    It was not easy... But I finally got it done and never had problems ever since. Now with almost 2 as soon as it turns 7.50 pm she will go and get her payamas.

    I was breastfeeding her, so I never really had her on a schedule there, I let her feed whenever she was hungry.

    When I started her on cereal with 4 months she got her cereal in the morning at 8 am and in the evening at 6 pm. And nursing whenever she wanted to.


    Answer by crazypink at 12:34 AM on Aug. 1, 2009

  • My daughter is a month and a week old and she is sleeping through the night (well, the past week at least). At about three weeks I started feeding her her late night bottle (like 10 or 11) with all the lights off and just the TV on. I lay her on my chest and she'd fall asleep and I'd move her to her bassinet. Than if she woke up in the middle of the night, I kept it dark and didn't talk to her. She'd take her bottle and go right back to sleep. Now, she takes her last bottle, snuggles with me and stays asleep. I'm not sure if she's got this sleep thing down but it HAS been a nice week!! Good luck!

    Answer by CrystalJanie at 1:01 AM on Aug. 1, 2009

  • You can start putting him down at the same time right now.

    Answer by gdiamante at 2:44 AM on Aug. 1, 2009

  • Our son started developing a regular routine around 6 months or so, but recently (he's 14 months) it's changed because he's dropping a nap but going to be earlier. :) They grow and change so much! Three months is actually a perfect time to start gently building a routine. My favorite resource has been the 90 Minute Baby Sleep Solution - it's a book written by a sleep scientist who noticed the importance of alertness cycles and helping baby learn to recognize that when they feel sleepy - SLEEP is what they should do. :) One important thing to keep in mind is that baby can start getting on a routine now, but they don't have the ability to fall asleep on their own (because they don't have the right amount of serotonin and sleep hormones) until around 6 months. So, if anyone recommends the cry-it-out method, be sure to research it fully. It's not a method I am comfortable with, but do your research you go that route.

    Answer by MamaSueCongdon at 2:50 AM on Aug. 1, 2009

  • Another really helpful resource is Elizabeth Pantley's "The No Cry Baby Sleep Solution." She emphasizes a bunch of gentle things you can do to help baby build a routine.

    Answer by MamaSueCongdon at 2:52 AM on Aug. 1, 2009

  • I started about 7 weeks because I was heading back to work and she was heading to daycare.

    Answer by vickwu at 11:44 AM on Aug. 1, 2009

  • I started a routine with my baby at the hospital. They put them on a 3 hour routine for breastfeeding moms, and I just kept that up when I got home. I made small adjustments with that as needed, stopped waking her up for his nighttime feedings so they would stretch out. I based it on the book Babywise: Giving Your Child the Gift of Nighttime Sleep, which is a great book! The book recommends a schedule with flexibility - it's a great resource, especially for first time moms.
    But yes - if you have a bedtime routine it will help her know that it's nighttime, the time when she sleeps longer, instead of just a regular nap.

    Answer by missanc at 12:52 PM on Aug. 1, 2009

  • I started my dd on a bedtime routine at about 2 1/2 months( sleeping in her pack and play in mommy and daddy's room) at 3 months I moved her to her crib and it only took about a week to get her going to bed pretty good for me. It's not easy, but it can be done.

    As far as a nap schedule that didn't come until about 6 months or so and that( for some reason) took longer for her to adjust to.

    Most importantly just remember that it takes time to implement a routine. Take your time and don't allow yourself to get frustrated. Baby will adjust in time if you are patient. Good Luck:)

    I've always let her run the show as far as when she gets her bottles. I just adjust the ounces when I feel it's needed and started including the baby food and table food as she was ready for it. You'll want to be asking your ped. when he/she thinks that is.


    Answer by Sophia_L at 4:52 PM on Aug. 1, 2009

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